Review - The Storm King by Brendan Duffy

The Storm King by Brendan Duffy
Narrated by Jon Lindstrom
Publisher: Ballantine Books | Random House Audio
Publication Date: February 6, 2018
Date Read: March 30, 2019
Length: 400 pages | 12 hours 58 minutes
Source: NetGalley | Purchased
Haunted by dark secrets and a shattering graduation night mystery, a young doctor returns to his isolated Adirondacks hometown in a tense, atmospheric novel in the vein of Gillian Flynn’s Dark Places and Jennifer McMahon’s The Night Sister.

Nate McHale is a committed family man and a dedicated pediatric cancer specialist. But he has another side, a dark, manipulative persona he has struggled to leave behind in Greystone Lake, the Adirondacks town where he reigned as the untouchable Storm King, a rage-filled teenager who led his devoted group of friends on midnight vigilante raids, wreaking vengeance on those who crossed them. At the center of the circle is wild, beautiful Lucy Bennett, linked forever to Nate by the tragedy that destroyed both their families, and Nate’s oldest friend Tom Buck, son of the chief of police, as open and earnest as Nate is veiled. Now a body has been discovered in the deep woods surrounding the town, a body that will lay bare the lies they have all told themselves and reignite the mystery that has haunted the town for fourteen years. And Nate McHale will come home at last, to find the truth—and the man he really is.

This propulsive thriller—a perfectly engineered mix of shifting perspective, journal entries, and past and present storylines—deftly balances small town, multigenerational drama, rich characters and history, and psychological suspense, and showcases why Refinery29 named Brendan Duffy “One of 21 New Authors You Need to Know.”
My Review

I thought that this was a rather interesting book.  I have had this one in my review pile for some time but hadn't yet worked it into my reading schedule for one reason or another.  I decided to grab the audio and give it a try.  I was initially drawn to the book by its description and the mysterious cover.  I did enjoy the story and am glad that I finally had the chance to read it.

Nate is at the center of this story and while I liked his character, I was never quite sure if he should be trusted.  We see Nate as both a teenager and an adult.  As an adult, Nate is a pediatric oncologist and a husband and father.  His life seems very upstanding but as I worked my way through the book, it seemed that he had a few things that he might be hiding.

As a child, Nate's family were in an accident at the lake which left his parents and sibling dead.  He grew up with his grandmother after the accident and grew close to a group of friends which included his girlfriend, Lucy Bennett.  This was one of those books that the more you read the more connected the events in the story seemed to become.  Everything seemed to be tied together in one way or another.

As an adult, Nate returns to town when Lucy's remains are found and events from the past are brought to the forefront.  The story did keep me guessing and I was never quite sure which direction things might end up going.  I really liked the way that the story was laid out giving the reader just enough of both the present and the past to really keep the story moving.

I thought that Jon Lindstrom did a fantastic job with the narration.  I believe that this was my first experience with this narration and I have no complaints at all.  He did a wonderful job with all of the character voices and I thought that the dialogue flowed nicely.  He had a very pleasant voice and I thought that he was able to bring a lot of excitement to the story.  I wouldn't hesitate to listen to his work again in the future.

I would recommend this book to others.  I thought that this was a well-done mystery that kept me guessing until the very end.  It was interesting to see how interconnected the events in the book were and how everything came together in the end.  I look forward to reading more of Brendan Duffy.

I received a digital review copy of this book from Random House - Ballantine Books via NetGalley and purchased a copy of the audiobook.
About the Author

BRENDAN DUFFY was an editor at both Putnam and Hyperion. He lives in New York, where he is at work on his next novel.

Author Links: Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter


  1. Sounds suspenseful. My curiosity has been piqued, adding thus to my wish list. Great review.

  2. I've had my eyes on this one so I'm glad to see it get such high praise from you. Hopefully I can pick it up soon.

  3. Don't you love a good, suspense-mystery? This sounds like the perfect read for a raining weekend.

  4. That can be fun not knowing if a character is trustworthy. Glad it turned out to be a good one and a good narrator, too.

  5. Mysteries can be fun. I haven't read a book like this in a while.

  6. It's always great when you don't figure the mystery line until the end!

  7. I do love a well done mystery!

  8. It sounds like you have a new favourite narrator and I just love that he was able to keep you intrigued all the way through. It sounds like the mystery is the biggest driving force of this book and that it was a very good one as well :D

  9. Oh I think I would love this trying to fit all the pieces together between the past and present.

  10. oh this sound great as it keeps you working all the time to solve the puzzle.

    Anne - Books of My Heart

  11. A good narrator is certainly vital for books like this and it sounds like you found a good one.


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